Tensions sky-high over SkyRise funding

The soaring $430 million SkyRise Miami tower hasn’t started construction yet, but it’s already generating considerable controversy over public subsidies for private companies.

Plans call for the building to rise 1,000 feet in the sky with a canopy shielding an amphitheater on Biscayne Bay, according to the projections of developer Jeff Berkowitz. Initially, Miami Mayor Tomás Regalado was on board with the project. But according to an article in the Miami Herald, tensions between the developer and the mayor boiled over after Berkowitz decided to seek millions in public funding.

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That move is an about face from the developer’s original proposal.

Indeed, Berkowitz has repeatedly pledged that SkyRise would be built at no cost to the city. But the developer recently applied to tap funds from property tax proceeds that are earmarked for economic development. [Miami Herald]